Thing are starting to get busy now what with the start of my day courses getting nearer, plus I find I am doing more 1-2-1 tuition this year as well. The 1-2-1 sessions are great because by the end of the day, you can see the progress that people have made and the confidence building in them. Photography is relatively simple and complex all at the same time. The best analogy is that of climbing up a mountain. It is harder work as you go uphill, this is the period when you are learning the technical aspects of photography, but once over the summit it is easier and mastery of the technical aspect frees you up to make the images you can visualise. It does take time, a lot of practice and maybe a little bit of selfishness to master the technical side and composition, but I do feel that these areas can be taught. Some people may have ‘the eye’ for a photograph, and progress faster, but most people will get there in the end. I know I am not the only person who thinks this way; Artie Morris, the American bird photographer and leader of many photography tours believes this as well.
The images in this post were all taken on my 1-2-1 days and are unusual in the fact that I actually took some images, plus they were all handheld. Normally I don’t take any pictures on my courses or tuition days. This is because?usually I am too busy working around the group or?with the individual?on their own images. I think if I started taking my own pictures I wouldn’t be happy with the results as I probably would have rushed them because I would be thinking that I am neglecting my client(s), which I would be.
I think that keeping the workshop time dedicated to the client(s) is very important and that is why I have small groups only. I know of some courses where there are larger numbers or the course leader is more interested in making his own pictures. This surely results in disappointment all round.
Time spent with clients is important as it has allowed me to detect habits in their photographic process. I have noticed that most of the clients needed to learn to slow down their picture making process and really analyse what caught their attention in the first place. This has helped them distill the elements in their photograph to the strongest?and as a result the images have improved. Occasionally equipment issues are causing the problems, especially with tripods, so I seem to have developed a reputation among some of the clients that after being on a course with me they all end up buying more equipment. That is the excuse that is being given to their partners anyway!